What’s the best way to cap off a Magic Kingdom day? Watching Happily Ever After! You’ve enjoyed a Dole Whip, successfully executed your Magic Kingdom Fastpass strategy, and now it’s time to take in the nighttime spectacular known as Happily Ever After. In our house, the show is our must-see nighttime show at Walt Disney World, and Disney agrees. With its rave reviews, Disney World has announced that’s taking its Happily Ever After talents to the holidays! Some lines will never get old, sorry, not sorry, LeBron. The holidays wait for no one, so let’s get cracking on what we should expect later this year!
Can we call it history if it’s recent? That’s a question for another day. On May 17, 2017, Happily Ever After made its debut at the Magic Kingdom, replacing Wishes as the nighttime spectacular, it was originally planned as a temporary show leading up to the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World. During its run, Happily Ever After has captivated guests so much that Disney has scrapped the idea of a new nighttime show for the monumental celebration. Happily Ever After will get the spotlight!
Over the past two years, Happily Ever After has been performed only on normal parks days, not for special events or parties. In both Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party (say that 5x times fast!) a holiday version of Wishes capped off the events.
Passholder Insights: For the best viewing of Happily Ever After we recommend finding a spot in front of the castle, and plan to get there around 45 minutes early as it does get crowded.
We’ve got announcements! On April 26, 2019, Disney Parks announced a new nighttime spectacular coming to Mickey’s Halloween Party for 2019. Starring Mickey, Minnie, Donald, and Goofy the show will be designed around projection effects, lasers, lighting, and fireworks, as you follow the stars through a haunted house. The Villains are preparing for their arrival as we speak in their summer event.
News continued on June 3, 2019, when Disney Parks made a second announcement about a new nighttime spectacular for Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party in 2019. Minnie will be taking center stage, move over Mickey it’s time for Minnie to shine! Using the same technology of the updated version of Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party’s show, the storyline will move through an array of classic holiday carols.
What To Expect
Gazing into our crystal ball, we would expect Disney to pull out all the stops on both of these shows. With how Disney Parks is describing them it’s clear that both shows will be designed around the same concept used in Happily Ever After. With the majority of the show taking place on the front side of the castle, you’ll find your best viewing spots around the Walt and Mickey statue and down Main Street USA. The fireworks can be experienced and seen throughout the park, but in our experience, the projections on the castle are what make the show.
The other option for a prime viewing spot for Happily Ever After is adding on a dessert party. Disney has announced the dessert parties will also be available during the special holiday events. If you’re looking to make it an extra special evening this could be a great way to do so. Please note that the dessert party is an additional cost.
We are expecting the viewing areas for the new holiday versions of Happily Ever After to be the same as the non-holiday version of the show.
Passholder Insights: If you would like to see the nighttime spectacular without attending the party, try to make a reservation at the California Grill at the Contemporary Resort. The restaurant pipes in the music and has amazing views overlooking the Magic Kingdom. Though be warned, you cannot see the castle from here.
Overall, Happily Ever After is a groundbreaking show that we’ve both enjoyed on many occasions. It’s great to see Disney World bringing the concept to the special holiday events. We’ve enjoyed the holiday versions of Wishes over the years, and we will miss them, but we can’t wait to see what’s to come. We’re only a few months away from the start of Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party and seeing what Disney’s created. The only question left to answer which Disney character are you going to be for Halloween?